Gerard (The Aerowyn Tales #1) by Carla Reighard
In this retelling of a tale as old as time, the enchantress Aerowyn curses and separates two beastly brothers, Gerard and Antoine, to punish them for their selfishness and cruelty. Having learned the truth about his cursed past, Gerard must now face his demons of jealousy, bitterness, and obsessive lost love to move forward.
With the help of Bellarose, an antagonistic beauty, he must try to break his brother’s curse — which has left him and his manor under a powerful enchantment. But it will take more than true love’s kiss to save his brother. Is Gerard up to the challenge, or is his heart too hard after years of suffering?
You’re invited to be our guest on this enchanting, almost-familiar adventure based on the beloved fairy tale, Beauty and the Beast. Settle in for a brand new once upon a time, and be ready to be swept away.
I really really enjoyed this book. It was a retelling of Beauty and the Beast like you have never imagined before. The story follows Gerald, who is a play on Gaston as he learns the truth of his past, as his story intertwines with Antoine, who is The Beast. The book is fast paced, reads quickly, and is fairly light despite covering deeper topics.
The story is firmly in the young adult genre, but it didn’t feel cheesy or annoying as I find some of those books to be (no shame since I am clearly older than their target audience.) I loved the backstory for Gerald and I loved all of the characters’ growth, but I think one of the things I liked most is that it wasn’t what you expected. Not just in the retelling of the story, but the characters and who they love and the assumptions and predictions you make as readers. It really had some great plot twists without feeling like a wrench was thrown into the story.
I am excited for more of this series to be written and I am definitely going to check out more of Reighard’s books. I clearly recommend this book and it is up there in my favorite fairy tale retellings with The Lunar Chronicles and The Golden Curse. This book is available on Kindle Unlimited.